Toothaches can have many causes, which is why it’s important to not try to diagnose the
problem by yourself at home. Since toothaches can cause severe pain and even have the
potential to cause a life-threatening infection, getting professional help sooner rather than later
is always a good idea. What are the possible causes of toothaches?
Infection or Decay
Tooth infections can happen when decay or trauma goes untreated and bacteria gets into the
root of your tooth, which contains all the nerve tissue that keeps your tooth alive. When
bacteria enter your tooth root, an infection can make the tooth die inside and may even
progress to the jaw bone.
If you suspect you have a tooth infection, make an appointment with your dentist as soon as
possible. The sooner you get your infection addressed, the better chance you have of saving
If your teeth feel like they’re aching from the inside out, you might be experiencing a case of
severe tooth sensitivity. Tooth sensitivity is caused when the tooth enamel is
compromised—whether due to over-brushing, decay, or bacteria—and temperatures reach the
center of the tooth and can cause pain.
For some people who experience tooth sensitivity, their pain may linger long after they’ve
eaten the offending food, leading them to wonder if something else is going on. Sensitive teeth
can be treated with help from your professional dentist, so don’t wait to seek help.
Teeth grinding—also called bruxism—is a cause of toothaches. You may be grinding your teeth
while asleep and be unaware of this dangerous habit, but during the day, your teeth may ache.
Bruxism is extremely harmful to your smile and can cause immense stress on the teeth as well
as the tooth roots, making your teeth more likely to fracture and become sensitive and your
gum tissue more likely to be inflamed.
A mouthguard or relaxation techniques can help you conquer bruxism and stop your perpetual
Trauma to the Tooth
If you’ve experienced any type of trauma to your tooth, such as an accident, a chip or a crack,
or even tooth decay, the tooth may respond by causing pain.
Tooth trauma can take many forms, but it should always be checked out by a dentist. Even
though a chip or a crack can seem minor, it has the potential to allow bacteria to enter your
tooth’s nerve, therefore causing pain and even an infection that could compromise your tooth.
Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Impacted wisdom teeth happen when the third molars don’t have enough room to erupt in the mouth, which can cause them to push against the other teeth and cause pain. Typically, impacted wisdom teeth will need to be removed by an oral surgeon, so don’t delay in getting them evaluated if you’re having pain in the back of your mouth!
If you’re having a toothache, getting it addressed sooner rather than later is always a good idea.
The longer you wait to have your tooth pain addressed, the higher the chances that your tooth
will need to be removed. Regular checkups can help you avoid a toothache, so don’t wait to talk
to your dentist!